Thursday, December 8, 2016
A New Candidate: Amazon Enters Feature Animation, Options 'Emily the Strange'
A new competitor is entering the world of feature animation. A big one that is part of a massive company... Amazon Studios.
Amazon Studios has been around for about 6 years, and up until now they've been doing TV shows. Their latest film, Jim Jarmusch's Paterson, is set to debut a few weeks from now. A good-sized theatrical release. They've got other films in the pipeline, and now their first animated film is in development, a film based on Emily the Strange.
Created back in the early 90s by skateboarder Rob Reger, the rebellious goth girl first appeared on clothing and other merchandise, and then later got her own graphic novel series in the early 2000s. A feature adaptation has been in the cards for a while. Universal and Illumination were set to make a live-action film based on the series a while back, but the rights eventually reverted back to Dark Horse Comics.
The new animated film take, according to The Hollywood Reporter, looks to "keep the authenticity and edge of the property". While it is still in the early stages of development, it's interesting to see Amazon Studios finally getting into the animated features business. We saw Netflix swoop in earlier this year when they acquired The Little Prince for stateside distribution after Paramount quietly dumped it.
If anything, it shows how streaming could make a real dent in the animated features world. More than anything, I find it interesting that Amazon optioned Emily the Strange of all things. It's definitely an out-there character and series, and the aesthetic of the comics and related animated shorts is pretty good material for animation. I just wonder if it'll be a traditionally animated film or a CG one, because I think 2D would suit it, plus because it's Amazon, perhaps they could get away with doing a 2D film and not have to worry about having to pull a big gross out of hat.
What say you?